SaleFish: Point of sale software a hit with new home buyers

SaleFish, a cloud-based point-of-sale real estate software solution, has proven to be a hit with real estate developers, new home builders, salespeople and clients.

The software is being used to provide up-to-date information about the building lots and home design options in new developments.

Yvonne Dick, (Original article)

September 21, 2018

Andrea DeGasperis-Ronco, president of Opus Homes, uses SaleFish in several developments in the Greater Toronto Area. “Potential buyers of all ages use the kiosk and figure it out with little guidance,” she says. “For example, they can choose a lot first and find out which homes fit on it, or vice versa. They can experiment with different homes on various lots and their availability options. They can look up lot premiums, square footages, prices…just about anything needed to help make an informed purchasing decision.”

The design firm RN in Vaughan, Ont., founded by Rob Nicolucci, is where SaleFish software began. Canadian residential designers Nicolucci and Rick Haws created the concept in 2006. Their mission was to create an easier-to-use point-of-sale software system. From planning, building, buying or selling a home, the team wanted to make the process easier and provide more up-to-date information.

The software can also be used online by customers and sales reps prior to appointments with at the builder’s presentation centre. They can browse listings and receive accurate and timely information, gaining details and pricing of individual properties or housing communities after a first meeting or before a showing. It is especially useful for projects involving multiple types of dwelling units. The software can also confirm that home models and lots are in accordance with zoning bylaws and architectural requirements.

Using their proprietary coding and technology allows SaleFish to give buyers and builders live quotes and other information. For example, condo builders can show prospective owners which units are still available and the features of those units.

Price changes, site details, plans and more are done “live” between the builder/designer or seller. It can also be used on iPads and LED touch-display devices – such as in showrooms or on-site in a model home.

SaleFish also offers an ActiveMatrix management console. This offers developers control over a project or portfolio of properties. Software tools help with the pricing of building calculations as well as individual units. Pricing adjustments can be made based on floor, unit, size, orientation and other criteria decided by the builder.

Potential buyers can search condos by size, floorplan and other factors that may be of interest to them. Viewing a map with all available units highlighted, buyers can see exactly where in a building or complex they would be living in relation to other buildings, units and amenities.

Clients pay a per lot or per suite fee and monthly fees to use the software.

Are presentation centres worried about the latest COVID-19 restrictions? Not really, it seems

A little over a week ago, COVID-19 restrictions returned to Ontario in response to record-high cases of the virus, sending the province into a modified Step Two of the Roadmap to Reopen. In addition to restricting social gathering limits to five people indoors, the latest round of measures also closed indoor meeting and event spaces.

For developers launching new construction projects this quarter, Ontario’s newly-imposed restrictions throw a wrench in any plans to keep presentation centres running as normal. But two years and five waves into this pandemic, are brick-and-mortar presentation centres surprised by the latest changes and the return to digital alternatives?

“Every launch that is happening, there is a component of digital tools and a digital way of selling and presenting. It’s a must-have now,” said Tim Ng, principal of ADHOC STUDIO, a digital product service for urban developments.

“For example, some of the launches that I’m seeing in Q1 this year — whether the lockdown was announced last week or whether there wasn’t a lockdown — it wouldn’t really change up the strategy too much since they already had, in their back pocket, [for] part of their marketing mix or sales strategy, they’re already using, for example, our platform to launch,” he told Livabl.

Developers have pivoted to technology alternatives

Ng explains that when the first wave of COVID-19 hit back in March 2020, people were unsure of what to do at first. Adoption of ADHOC’s Blackline app, a web-based sales and marketing platform that allows sales teams to remotely present and transact real estate, surged. Fast forward two years, and developers have taken advantage of digital and cloud-based tools that cover tasks which would have normally occurred in a sales centre, said Ng.

For the latest phase of restrictions implemented this month, some developers closed the doors to their sales centres for the foreseeable future.

Brian Brown, principal of Lifetime Developments, told Livabl in a statement that the company has changed course as a result of the most recent round of COVID-19 guidelines. In early January, the developer launched sales for its XO2 Condos project in Toronto’s West Queen West neighbourhood with Pinedale Properties, Ltd. With a freshly-renovated sales office ready to open its doors, Lifetime Developments closed the centre with the exception of private appointments for small groups. The launch was scheduled over Zoom.

“Of course, this is not exactly how we had hoped to showcase this project including our finishes and our Freemotion Fitness partnership,” he said. “Fortunately, our industry has really adapted over the last year and everyone has really embraced social media, Zoom meetings and digital signings. It’s not ideal and I do miss the face-to-face interaction with our clients and their agents.”

Although the newest restrictions have “taken some of the excitement away,” Brown said that this does not concern him — 2022 will be a busy year regardless of whether business is conducted remotely or in person.

“Our industry has shown resiliency and tremendous adaptability. It was not easy at first and new policy and even legal processes had to be put in place to make sure everything was being managed appropriately,” he said. “From a sales and marketing standpoint, we have all found new ways to follow social distancing rules while still remaining present and effective.”

Some crave in-person meetings again, some don’t

Sales centres aren’t immune to the debate over whether working remotely versus working in an office is better.

Rick Haws, president and co-founder of SaleFish — a global software solutions firm for residential real estate developers and builders — agrees that companies had already adapted their strategies ahead of the latest round of restrictions. Consumers have also adjusted to the new way of buying pre-construction homes, with the majority of purchasers now preferring digital options to the sales centre, even when presentation offices are open.

After restrictions were lifted the first time around, 75 per cent of purchasers opted for online appointments versus in-person options when given the choice, according to SaleFish. Prior to the pandemic, Haws explains that lineups outside of sales offices were huge. With the use of technology, purchasers now have a better opportunity to buy a unit without leaving the comfort and safety of home.

Photo: Adam / Adobe Stock

“[I] think even moving forward, once we get back to being able to have people in sales offices more regularly, now that the tools are in place and that people are so used to using them, I think it’s going to be something that is going to be used more regularly just as usual, as opposed to it being as a necessity, because it’s convenient for people,” said Haws.

On the flip side, Haws anticipates that once sales teams have the opportunity to go back to one-on-one meetings again, they will gravitate towards this option as they are most comfortable with this scenario. However, Haws says that the customer will ultimately determine what the interaction between sales and consumers will be, whether that’s a one-on-one experience or a hybrid of in-person and virtual meetings.

“Salespeople are going to want to build those relationships with those people. Real estate is not a commodity. It’s not like you just go out and buy it and you’re done with it. Purchasing real estate is an experience. It’s a transaction that takes up to two years sometimes,” said Haws.

“And so building that relationship between the salesperson and the purchaser is important because that’s not something that just comes and goes,” he added.

Smaller, temporary spaces potentially the future of sales centres

With sales software and virtual meetings the norm for new construction projects now, it calls into question the future of sales centres.

While developers may still prefer to use and create a physical space to meet clients in person, these environments have been scaled down compared to pre-pandemic, million-dollar presentation centres. Ng notes that some developers have been opting for smaller, pop-up-style sales offices, like the one CentreCourt ran inside Yorkdale Mall for WestLine Condos. Before COVID-19, developers would use the full completion of their sales office to initiate a project launch, said Ng, but this process is also changing.

“Developers are being less reliant on having a physical sales office to sell or to launch,” said Ng. “When we’re ready to go to launch, whether we have a sales office built or it’s finished, we can still sell and get to a fair amount of sales before we open the sales office.”

Ng explains once presentation centres are open again, a handful of purchasers in the later phases of the sales cycle will want to visit the office, perhaps as a final signing destination for contracts or to view unit finishes. However, in the discovery and inquiry stages of researching a new project, digital tools will continue to have an important role to play.

“Collectively we can all agree it’s hard to recreate those tangible moments of face-to-face interaction virtually, like being able to go into a sales centre to see, touch and feel everything,” said Brown. “At the end of the day though, I look forward to shaking people’s hands once again and the odd hug here and there too.”


It is a virtual world

Martin Slofstra, Toronto Sun • New Homes And Condos (Original article)

December 03, 2022

New home buyers enjoy the benefits of going on-line

It seems to be a bit of far-fetched notion, to research, to shop for and to buy a new home entirely online, never to enter a sales office or visit a model home. But not only can it be done; the reality is the majority of new home buyers are preferring it that way.

It may also not be what Canadian software designers Rob Nicolucci and Rick Haws could foresee happening in 2006 when they co-founded a software system called SaleFish, a simple streamlined and secure platform for real estate transactions and for builders to sell new homes.

The goal initially was to make the sales process easier by providing more up-to-date information, and earlier versions of the software catered to needs of salespeople who worked for new home builders.

Fast forward to now, it’s also helping new home buyers change the way they research and buy new homes, and fundamentally alter the way the new home and condo industry operates.

And the turning point? Says Haws simply: “COVID-19 changed everything, they (the builders) had to adapt.”

The pandemic, of course, made in-person visit to a sales office impossible, at least for a few months. That the software can be used by customers and sales reps to back-up and streamline appointments online became one of its most important features.

Using the software, buyer and seller can browse listings or new home sites, and receive accurate and timely information, gaining details and pricing of each model or home.

Along the way, many other benefits were also realized.

Line-ups at sales offices were eliminated, and so too the madhouse scene of a dozen or so salespersons in a trailer at a new home site chasing after customers scrambling around hoping that a certain lot at a certain price was still available.

Using the software, all price changes, site details, plans could be updated instantly, and in theory, the reach of the sales office could be extended to any remote computer, whether an iPad, touch-display device or laptop computer.

All the way around it just makes the sales process more enjoyable, “it’s no longer a pressure-cooker when it comes time to buying a new home,” says Richard Mariani, sales and marketing manager, CountryWide Homes, which uses the software at its new homes sites now open in Bradford, Brampton, Caledon, East Gwillimbury, Holland Landing, Markham, Oakville, Richmond Hill and Simcoe County.

Mariani says that in spring 2020, the builder had to pivot. “During the early onset of the pandemic, most of us were wondering if we would still have a job. But by June 2020, people were ready to buy,” he says.

The rest, of course, is history, as the Toronto real estate and new home market would in the next two years enter into one of its hottest sales periods ever. Obviously, the pandemic changed everything, but Mariani observes there is now also a much greater comfort level with technology.

“The buyer is more educated than ever and does their homework in advance and on web sites. Customers already know what they want in terms of models, pricing, neighbourhood amenities and they have access to all this information at their fingertips,” he says. “Many purchasers come to an online meeting already prepared to make a deal.”

In addition, the software enables the builder to receive analytics, helping them to see trends such as which design features and amenities are the most popular. And by eliminating much of the paperwork in the process, “It allows us to open projects more quickly, get to market sooner and gives management the information they need to make decisions,” says Mariani.

Software development of course is an ongoing process and work is now being done to give SaleFish a sleek, modern feel with an intuitive user interface, while enabling it to more easily integrate with other kinds of business software and with third-party solutions.

Now set to unveil its “biggest platform changes in years,” other features will address three major needs: Security, identity verification and payments. “The identity verification piece is a big one, nobody is doing that,” says Haws.

Not only can SaleFish automatically fill in documents by scanning driver’s licenses and securing that data, but it can also verify that it’s scanning a live person (rather than a bot) and compare the person’s face with the ID provided. This has become an imperative feature with remote buying being more commonplace.

Another big consideration is security. SaleFish is also the only real estate platform to have a CyberSecure Canada certification for meeting the highest levels of security for data storage.

With payments, buyers will have the option to make all their deposits and initial down payment online.

Having fundamentally changed the new home buying process, there will be no going back.

Research shows 75 per cent of new home buyers prefer an online appointment versus live one, and the comfort level with software tools like Microsoft Teams and Zoom has never been higher.

Mariani acknowledges too there always be those who insist on meeting in person, but that is now a minority of new home buyers.

That being the case, the only thing left for the new home buyers to do live and in person is pick up the keys. Safe to say, the software will take care of the rest.


Streamlined Experience.

Unified Platform.

Lightning-Fast Performance.

We’ve been working tirelessly on an exciting new version of our platform tailored specifically for builders, developers, and sales teams. You now have access to experience a sleeker, more efficient way to handle pre-construction real estate sales. Selling condos, homes, townhomes and stacks just got a whole lot easier.



  • Updated admin console with a fresh look & feel to match the sales app, and we’ve moved actions to the top of the screen for easy access.
  • New menu in the sales app letting salespeople choose to sell from the site plan, lot list, or floor plans.
  • More info in fewer clicks! You can now see the lot status, applicable lot premiums, available models, and elevations.
  • A new search bar to quickly find the specific lot or model you need.
  • Custom status colours! We offer a beautiful set of easily recognizable default colours, but we can change them to suit your sales team’s preferences or match your project’s branding.
  • Community Assets are now easily accessible from the main menu for quick reference when selling.








  • Introducing the Matrix view, which lets you effortlessly see the status of the entire building, floor by floor.
  • The sales app now features a revamped menu that lets you sell from the new matrix, suite list, or floor plans. You can even add your 3D building!
  • A new search bar makes it a breeze to find the specific suite or model you’re looking for.
  • Custom status colours! Our default colours are vibrant and easily recognizable, but we can tailor them to your sales team’s preferences or project’s branding.
  • Community Assets are now front and centre in the main menu for quick access when you need them.
  • The admin console now sports a sleek new look to match the sales app, with actions conveniently relocated to the top of the screen.